The happier the staff is, the more passionate and productive they will be in their work.
Peter Nyberg, Chief Financial Officer at the Camino Community Center, is instrumental in the expansion and restructuring of the Camino Community Center, which positively impacts the lives of thousands of low-income, underserved individuals, primarily Latino immigrants. As the center continues to expand, it has experienced growing pains, as many other successful businesses experience. To alleviate the inevitable growing pain issues, CEO Rusty Price turned to Peter Nyberg for his professional expertise and guidance.
Peter Schieffelin Nyberg began his career as a graduate of Yale College. The first position he held was as a school teacher and a sports coach at a private boarding school for boys. Stretching his wings, Peter Nyberg began trading in the commodities market over the following two years. At the age of 26, he returned to Yale School of Management. He concentrated in healthcare management and earned his master’s in business administration. After graduate school, Nyberg was awarded a one-year fellowship at Duke University Healthcare System in Durham, North Carolina. As his year-long fellowship program came to a close, he was offered a full-time position in hospital administration at Duke Medical Center. In 1999 during the internet boom, Nyberg pivoted into the newly emerging market and joined the dot-com world, in the medical supply industry. Peter Schieffelin Nyberg was very successful in medical sales and services, until the internet bubble burst.
Due to his success in the digital healthcare arena, Peter Nyberg challenged himself to succeed by becoming an entrepreneur in 2002. He opened 21CD, a digital marketing business. Over the next ten years, Peter’s business thrived at times and struggled at others. 21CD morphed and was renamed 21Digital. As the market became saturated, the business evolved to become Ingage Inc. After ten years as an entrepreneur, Peter Nyberg transitioned again as the company folded.
Moving forward, Peter Nyberg became a business consultant. In August of 2019, he contracted to perform a ninety-day assessment for a North Carolina Non-profit organization. The organization is the Camino Community Center, which primarily serves the Latino and immigrant communities.
Nyberg was previously acquainted with the family of the founder and CEO of Camino. As the assessment came to a close, he was offered a position as Chief Financial Officer for the organization. Knowing he would face many challenges, from implementing banking and financial systems and processes to the restructure and reorganization of six separate service entities under one umbrella. Peter became the Chief Financial Officer of Camino Community Center in November of 2019. He has empowered the organization by implementing many new initiatives and restructuring staff members based on talent, interest, and skill level.
The future looks bright for the Camino Community Center under the creative guidance of Rusty Price, CEO, and the professional administrative expertise of Peter Schieffelin Nyberg, CFO.
Where did the idea for Camino Community Center come from?
Several years ago, I was approached by a friend who requested that I meet with his brother who was a missionary and a dreamer, as well as the founder and CEO of the Camino Community Center. I managed to arrange a time to meet with Rusty Price. He is a creative genius who has been managing the business month-to-month. Based on my educational and professional experiences, I knew I could help lead the organization to sustainability and profiitability. I have become his right-hand-man. I am the Chief Administrative Officer and CFO. Going forward we will become more successful and self-sustaining. We do not want to be dependent strictly on donations and grants.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I am currently working with the management team digging through files and trying to make sense of bank statements, receipts and invoices. We are organizing financial systems and processes for all entities so that we can have meaningful reports. The community center has a primary-care clinic, a mental health clinic, a thrift store, a food pantry, a fitness center, and a homeless ministry. They are all located on one campus. I am serving to help professionalize every aspect of the entire organization. This means that I meet with everyone from people from the community or representatives from the banks or board members, even prospective donors.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I am a prolific and deliberate walker. I get my best ideas while I am walking. I walk from two to ten miles a day. I do my best thinking while I am walking. Some people think best while they are in the shower, others while they are driving a car. For me, it is while I am walking. Rusty and I have assembled a seven-person management team. We meet weekly to discuss business ideas that should be brought to fruition. We collaborate on any business issues or ideas.
What’s one trend that excites you?
One trend that excites me is that I am seeing more acceptance of a multicultural lifestyle. I have not been exposed to such an environment in my past history. All of our services are offered in English and Spanish. We are very language and culture friendly at Camino.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I am disciplined, patient, and persistent. There is a balance as to when I should be more patient and when to be persistent.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would tell younger Peter Schieffelin Nyberg not to take yourself or life too seriously. Enjoy the journey more because you only get to experience it once.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
The United States of America is a private Corporation that is owned by a consortium of international bankers.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I would recommend Hot Yoga. I do it a few times a week and recommend that everybody do it.
You actually exercise in a room that is set at a hundred and two degrees and sweat out all toxins. I’ve been doing this as I recover from a shoulder injury that has been preventing me from playing tennis and I find it to be cleansing and refreshing.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
One strategy is implementing when something is good enough and not waiting until it is perfect. For example, we implemented a new strategy related to our patient care clinic. We expanded our operating hours from two days per week to five days per week. We introduced walk-in services and tweaked the payment model. We introduced the changes by launching a website where local employers, employees, and individuals become aware of our new clinic. I tasked the marketing & communications person with getting the site up even though we may have been at 80-85% done. I didn’t want to wait for perfection.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Resources are scarce. We try to identify where staff members would best fit into the organization. We would like to have them in a position where they would be most passionate. In a non-profit, you have many really great people, but they are usually multitasking and often asked to work on projects that might not be in their area of interest or expertise. Part of my assessment was to try to evaluate each person’s strength, skills, and interest to better utilize our resources. The happier they are the more passionate and productive they will be in their work.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
A mobile hair stylist business using a converted cargo van. You can go to client’s house or place of work and provide services with minimal overhead.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I was at a distillery in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. I bought two different bottles of flavored whiskey. One was a cinnamon whiskey and the other was a sour raspberry whiskey. It was about a hundred dollars for both. I enjoy sipping on them with ice. They are quite flavorful.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
I use Quickbooks, it is user-friendly and helpful to keep banking and accounting functions simpler.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
If You’re so Smart, Why Aren’t You Happy? By Raj Raghunathan
I like this book because it explains the minimal link between professional success and personal fulfillment, between wealth and happiness. It also extols the virtuousness of generosity, giving both of your time and your money. And it argues that accepting that much of life is uncertain will help you stop looking for greener pastures and look at the green land below your feet and make the most of best of where you are today.
What is your favorite quote?
You can’t always get what you want.
● Assemble a management team to collaborate on any business issues or ideas.
● One strategy is to implement an idea or plan when it is good enough, don’t wait for perfection.
● The happier the staff is, the more passionate and productive they will be in their work.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.